Sanjeev Nanda: after nights in Claridges, sleepless in Tihar

September 3rd, 2008 - 5:27 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Sep 3 (IANS) He tossed and turned through the wakeful night, perhaps missing his penthouse suite in the five-star Claridges Hotel owned by his family and pondering his uncertain tomorrow. Sanjeev Nanda, convicted for mowing down six people under his BMW in 1999, had been in Tihar Jail earlier but this time the realisation probably sank — he could be in for the long haul. The grandson of former navy chief S.M. Nanda and arms dealer Suresh Nanda had been brought to jail number 4 Tuesday evening, soon after a Delhi court found him guilty of culpable homicide not amounting to murder for which the maximum punishment is 10 years.

But fearing threats to his life from criminals in the jail, he requested officials to put him in a cell instead of a barrack. Officials also realised the risk involved to the life of their high-profile guest and decided to lodge him in a solitary cell after a mandatory medical examination by prison doctors.

The 30-year-old bought a water bottle from the jail canteen and ate a humble meal of dal, vegetables, chapatis and rice served to other inmates.

Nanda has been in Tihar twice - once for nine months and second time for about a month.

Was this time different?

“After dinner, he was sent to his barrack where he spent the night with his eyes open and restless. He was calm though he could be seen switching sides in a desperate bid to catch some sleep,” said a jail official.

“He didn’t complain of mosquitoes but asked for newspaper and tea in the morning. He read the paper at length before being taken to court around 10.30 a.m.,” the official added.

He would be shifted to another jail after the quantum of punishment — due to be announced Wednesday and now deferred till Friday.

“If he is handed a long imprisonment, we would transfer him to jail number 2. In the case of a lesser punishment, he would continue to remain in jail number 4,” said another official.

Jail sources say he might be in the company of Manu Sharma and Vikas Yadav — both children of powerful fathers. Manu Sharma, son of politician Venod Sharma, is convicted in the murder of Delhi model Jessica Lal. And Vikas Yadav, son of Uttar Pradesh politician D.P. Yadav, is convicted in the murder of Nitish Katara.

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